Celebrating Diwali Exhibition

Celebrating Diwali Exhibition

To mark Diwali 2020, we have launched a project in order to capture stories from our local community to highlight how the festival is celebrated amongst Harrow’s diverse communities. This project has been kindly funded by the London Museum Development Fund Diversity Matters Grant Programme and is part of Interfaith Week. The aim of this project is to collect objects, recipes, cooking videos and stories relating to Diwali from various individuals and businesses in Harrow, for our permanent collection in order to diversify our collection. With an array of online content, we invite you to celebrate Diwali with us at Headstone Manor & Museum.

Diwali: A Celebration in Harrow
Due to the second lockdown, we were unable to showcase our exhibition physically on site, however, thanks to filmmaker Marianna Michael and Jennal Amin, Founder of Mental Wealth, we are delighted to present our exhibition as an online alternative. Over the last month, we invited members of the communited to donate objects that reflected their version of Diwali, alongside their personal stories of the annual festival. We would like to say thank you to all those who donated objects and stories for our exhibition. We hope to install the physically exhibition in 2021.





Rangoli Art with Ranjana

This Rangoli art video created for us at Headstone Manor & Museum was designed by Harrow resident, Ranjana Patel, for our online exhibition on Diwali in Harrow.

Derived from the Sanskrit word rangavalli, the word translates to mean “rows of colours”. Rangoli is usually made around special occasions like Diwali and weddings. Each design incorporates a range of designs symbolising various traditions according to different regions or purpose. For example, special patterns for Diwali include diyas (candles), birds, flowers as well as images of Ganesha and Lakshmi. Designs have passed down over generations in order to keep this art alive but today we see contemporary designs incorporated into traditional ones.

Creating a Rangoli during festivities like Diwali is thought to bring good luck to those celebrating. Traditionally it is carried out by women. Rangoli can be made with various materials such as sand, flour, rice, grains and/or flower petals, coloured with natural materials to produce a colourful design.

“I love the meditative effect of rangoli’s – it’s mesmerising not just to create but to also watch the process as well as appreciate the finished creation. To me, this beautiful, yet transient nature of rangoli, means happiness in the moment, a new opportunity, a brand-new beginning and hope for the future and indeed this is what we wish each other during Diwali and special occasions in our lives.”

To find out more about Ranjana and to discover her work please follow here via social media @ RanjanaCreates


Diwali Recipe Book
We are so excited to share with you our Diwali inspired recipe book featuring 15 recipes from food lovers to food businesses in Harrow. With the support from Mental Wealth, we gathered recipes from the community in the hope to provide inspiration during the festival and a ray of light during these difficult times. We have also featured a few of our own museum objects which have sparked the creation of some of the recipes in this book too!

Cooking in Harrow!
To mark Diwali this year, we asked two food vloggers to share their favourite recipes with us! We are so excited to share tasty Diwali – inspired recipes from Premila’s Veggie Recipes and Cardamom Kitchen, both residents of Harrow.

You can find out more about both vloggers on Instagram!







‘Bandhani’ Weave

Produced by HCP – A community group of Harrovian Gujarati Indians. A video of a traditional Weave called “bandhani” originated in Gujarat and is handmade. Wearing traditional sarees is essential during festivities, this video captures this intricate skill form called “bandhani”.



Diwali Storytime – For Kids!
Join Sunita Shah, author of The Jai Jais, as she reads her book on Diwali. We are delighted to have acquired three children’s books from The Jai Jais series into our permanent collection. To find out more visit the site here




Colour me in – For Adults!
Unwind with this adult diwali colouring sheet Designed by Neeta from the Jain Vishwa Bharati Peace Centre.



Happening Elsewhere in Harrow




Celebrating Diwali at Home – Photo Competiton!